Update: Commissioner Suuberg has approved the permit. This fight will go on, in court.
This thing has gone statewide, folks: 29 State Senators signed a letter to Mass. Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Martin Suuberg, asking him to reject and rescind permits for the Weymouth gas compressor station.
In their letter, they hit all the key points:
- More gas infrastructure is incompatible with meeting Massachusetts’ greenhouse gas goals;
- Compressor stations emit carcinogenic pollutants;
- This one would be situated near a heavily-populated area …
- … which is already a polluted “environmental justice” community;
- MassDEP has essentially stated that there is literally no level of already-existing pollution that would affect their permitting decision, a pro-polluter Catch-22;
- The lack of transparency, the arbitrary and high-handed way in which MassDEP has handled the air quality data, have corroded public trust:
“Considering the impact that this project would have on public health, it should be presumed that our standards of adjudicative transparency would be upheld to the highest degree. Unfortunately, the opposite has been the case, and the public trust has been lost.”
The administrative proceedings surrounding the Weymouth compressor station application are fraught with errors, inaccuracies, and obstructions. ”
Thanks to these Senators, including my own, Cindy Friedman, for taking notice. This is indeed a statewide issue, as the indefatigable Andrea Honoré has posted here. The whole letter is below the fold, or you can read it at FRRACS: